EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT) – The Evansville Wartime Museum has unveiled another special exhibit that holds special meaning to the area. The museum recently acquired an operational Sherman tank, named Cheyenne, from another museum in Texas. The tank had previously been on display at a tank museum in Normandy.
“It’s a real attraction,” says Mike Tiemann with the Evansville Wartime Museum. “And for it to be, if it were a static display, that’s one thing. But to be operational, that opens up a lot of things.”
According to Tiemann, nearly 80,000 Sherman tanks were built during World War II by Ford, Chrysler, and General Motors. Tiemann tells us there was a testing track for those Sherman tanks in Evansville, but the River City also played another role in the tank’s history.
“There were approximately 1,700 Sherman tanks repaired, rebuilt or refurbished, in Evansville,” explains Tiemann.
The tank was on display just in time for the Fourth of July weekend. Museum attendees, including Landon Chapman and his grandparents, were in awe of the size of the tank.
“They are about as tall as I am,” says Landon. “I’m about right here and the wheels are about right there.”
The tanks could hold a crew of 5 soldiers in an an often cramped and hot space. Tiemann says to endure the conditions inside for hours or days on end shows the grit and spirit of our veterans.
“These were children, 18, 19, 20 year olds, and the sacrifice in doing that. This is what needs to be done? Okay, we’ll do it,” says Tiemann.